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Statewide Representation Throughout Alabama (205) 871-8838
Free Professional Consultations 24 hours a Day(205) 222-4544

If an individual fails to appear at a specified court date, they may face serious consequences. While missing a court date might seem like an unremarkable offense, it could lead to fines or even jail time depending on what the court date was originally for.

In certain cases, there are understandable reasons for failing to appear in court. Retaining a Crenshaw County failure to appear lawyer to represent you and your best interests may be important to communicate those reasons. If you are being charged with such an offense, consider seeking the expertise of a hard-working attorney immediately.

Why Someone May Be Called to Court

There are three main reasons why an individual would be called to appear in court: citations, summons, or subpoenas. Citations are by far the most common reason, as they are typically from police officers for a traffic violation. While a person could avoid going to court if they pay the fine associated with a citation, their appearance in court would be required if they do not pay or if they wish to contest the citation.

A summons occurs when an individual is a defendant in a criminal case or part of a civil lawsuit. By law, individuals are required to answer a summons and appear in court when instructed to do so. Failing to do so may result in hefty fines, jail time, and other serious legal consequences.

A subpoena is a legal mandate for witnesses in a case to appear in court for either a criminal or civil case and testify under oath. Similar to ignoring a summons, failure to compel with a subpoena may result in fines or jail time. No matter what the original court date was about, a knowledgeable attorney could explain a person’s rights if they fail to appear.

Consequences of Missing a Court Date

Failing to appear in court in Crenshaw County is considered a criminal offense and may lead to criminal charges. This can result in a warrant for an individual’s arrest and detainment until a judge is available for a hearing.

The consequences may be more extreme depending on why an individual was called to appear in court in the first place. It could be best to consult a Crenshaw County attorney to learn about the consequences of failing to appear and about the possible legal options and defenses available.

Defenses to Failure to Appear

Alabama state law is not designed to punish someone for negligence or for situations outside of the defendant’s control that prevented their appearance in court. To be charged with failure to appear, an individual must willfully and intentionally fail to show up to their court date.

Consequently, there are reasonable defenses that a failure to appear lawyer in Crenshaw County could discuss with a defendant if they were charged with this offense. Such defenses include being in a car accident, suffering from an illness, hospitalization, or a death in the family. In certain cases, negligence on the part of the court to give appropriate and timely notice of the court date could also be a reasonable defense.

Contact a Crenshaw County Failure to Appear Attorney

Failing to appear in court is a serious offense that could lead to various legal consequences. If you have missed a court date, a Crenshaw County failure to appear lawyer could be ready with the expertise you need. A dedicated attorney may be able to help you through the litigation process and build a strong defense to a failure to appear charge. For more information or to schedule an initial consultation, call today.